Editor’s Choice Articles

Editor’s Choice articles are based on recommendations by the scientific editors of MDPI journals from around the world. Editors select a small number of articles recently published in the journal that they believe will be particularly interesting to readers, or important in the respective research area. The aim is to provide a snapshot of some of the most exciting work published in the various research areas of the journal.

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12 pages, 967 KiB  
Review
Clinical Perspectives and Management of Edema in Chronic Venous Disease—What about Ruscus?
by Imre Bihari, Jean-Jérôme Guex, Arkadiusz Jawien and Gyozo Szolnoky
Medicines 2022, 9(8), 41; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines9080041 - 25 Jul 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2706
Abstract
Background: Edema is highly prevalent in patients with cardiovascular disease and is associated with various underlying pathologic conditions, making it challenging for physicians to diagnose and manage. Methods: We report on presentations from a virtual symposium at the Annual Meeting of the European [...] Read more.
Background: Edema is highly prevalent in patients with cardiovascular disease and is associated with various underlying pathologic conditions, making it challenging for physicians to diagnose and manage. Methods: We report on presentations from a virtual symposium at the Annual Meeting of the European Venous Forum (25 June 2021), which examined edema classification within clinical practice, provided guidance on making differential diagnoses and reviewed evidence for the use of the treatment combination of Ruscus extract, hesperidin methyl chalcone and vitamin C. Results: The understanding of the pathophysiologic mechanisms underlying fluid build-up in chronic venous disease (CVD) is limited. Despite amendments to the classic Starling Principle, discrepancies exist between the theories proposed and real-world evidence. Given the varied disease presentations seen in edema patients, thorough clinical examinations are recommended in order to make a differential diagnosis. The recent CEAP classification update states that edema should be considered a sign of CVD. The combination of Ruscus extract, hesperidin methyl chalcone and vitamin C improves venous tone and lymph contractility and reduces macromolecule permeability and inflammation. Conclusions: Data from randomized controlled trials support guideline recommendations for the use of Ruscus extract, hesperidin methyl chalcone and vitamin C to relieve major CVD-related symptoms and edema. Full article
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9 pages, 353 KiB  
Commentary
The Sweet Side of Fungal Infections: Structural Glycan Diversity and Its Importance for Pathogenic Adaptation
by Israel Diniz-Lima, Leonardo Marques da Fonseca, Jhenifer Santos dos Reis, Marcos André Rodrigues da Costa Santos, Kelli Monteiro da Costa, Carlos Antonio do Nascimento Santos, Pedro Marçal Barcelos, Kamila Guimarães-Pinto, Alessandra Almeida Filardy, Marco Edilson Freire-de-Lima, Debora Decote-Ricardo, Alexandre Morrot, Celio Geraldo Freire-de-Lima and Leonardo Freire-de-Lima
Medicines 2022, 9(6), 37; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines9060037 - 16 Jun 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2122
Abstract
Fungal infections are the most common secondary infections in debilitated individuals in a state of chronic disease or immunosuppression. Despite this, most fungal infections are neglected, mainly due to the lower frequency of their more severe clinical forms in immunocompetent individuals with a [...] Read more.
Fungal infections are the most common secondary infections in debilitated individuals in a state of chronic disease or immunosuppression. Despite this, most fungal infections are neglected, mainly due to the lower frequency of their more severe clinical forms in immunocompetent individuals with a healthy background. However, over the past few years, several cases of severe fungal infections in healthy individuals have provoked a change in the epidemiological dynamics of fungal infections around the world, both due to recurrent outbreaks in previously infrequent regions and the greater emergence of more pathogenic fungal variants affecting healthy individuals, such as in the Cryptococcus genus. Therefore, before the arrival of a scenario of prevalent severe fungal infections, it is necessary to assess more carefully what are the real reasons for the increased incidence of fungal infection globally. What are the factors that are currently contributing to this new possible epidemiological dynamic? Could these be of a structural nature? Herein, we propose a discussion based on the importance of the virulence factors of glycoconjugate composition in the adaptation of pathogenic fungal species into the current scenario of increasing severity of these infections. Full article
21 pages, 2058 KiB  
Review
Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine: A Brief Review of the Hands-On Treatment Approaches and Their Therapeutic Uses
by Ashley Roberts, Kaylee Harris, Bethany Outen, Amar Bukvic, Ben Smith, Adam Schultz, Stephen Bergman and Debasis Mondal
Medicines 2022, 9(5), 33; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines9050033 - 27 Apr 2022
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 12724
Abstract
Osteopathic manipulative medicine (OMM) is an emerging practice in the healthcare field with increasing popularity and evidence-based therapy. Osteopathic manipulative treatments (OMT) include hands-on manipulations of different body structures to increase systemic homeostasis and total patient well-being. Indeed, this new realm of the [...] Read more.
Osteopathic manipulative medicine (OMM) is an emerging practice in the healthcare field with increasing popularity and evidence-based therapy. Osteopathic manipulative treatments (OMT) include hands-on manipulations of different body structures to increase systemic homeostasis and total patient well-being. Indeed, this new realm of the whole patient-based approach is being taught in osteopathic schools around the country, and the osteopathic principles of a mind-body-spirit-based treatment are being instilled in many new Doctor of Osteopathy (D.O.) students. However, despite their proven therapeutic value, there are still many individuals, both in and outside the medical profession, who are unaware (or misinformed) of the therapeutic uses and potential benefits of OMT. Here, we provide a brief introduction to this osteopathic therapeutic approach, focusing on the hands-on techniques that are regularly implemented in the clinical setting. It is becoming increasingly evident that different OMTs can be implemented to enhance patient recovery, both alone and in conjunction with the targeted therapies used in allopathic regimens. Therefore, it may be beneficial to inform the general medical community and educate the public and those associated with the healthcare field about the benefits of using OMT as a treatment modality. OMT is lower-cost, noninvasive, and highly effective in promoting full-body healing by targeting the nervous, lymphatic, immune, and vascular systems. There is a growing body of literature related to osteopathic research and the possible molecular pathways involved in the healing process, and this burgeoning field of medicine is expected to increase in value in the healthcare field. This brief review article explains the frequently utilized OMT modalities and their recognized therapeutic benefits, which underscore the need to understand the possible molecular mechanisms and circulating biomarkers linked to the systemic benefits of osteopathic medicine. Full article
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31 pages, 578 KiB  
Review
Novel Psychoactive Substances: The Razor’s Edge between Therapeutical Potential and Psychoactive Recreational Misuse
by Beatriz Correia, Joana Fernandes, Maria João Botica, Carla Ferreira and Alexandre Quintas
Medicines 2022, 9(3), 19; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines9030019 - 01 Mar 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 3864
Abstract
Background: Novel psychoactive substances (NPS) are compounds of natural and synthetic origin, similar to traditional drugs of abuse. NPS are involved in a contemporary trend whose origin lies in a thinner balance between legitimate therapeutic drug research and legislative control. The contemporary NPS [...] Read more.
Background: Novel psychoactive substances (NPS) are compounds of natural and synthetic origin, similar to traditional drugs of abuse. NPS are involved in a contemporary trend whose origin lies in a thinner balance between legitimate therapeutic drug research and legislative control. The contemporary NPS trend resulted from the replacement of MDMA by synthetic cathinones in ‘ecstasy’ during the 2000s. The most common NPS are synthetic cannabinoids and synthetic cathinones. Interestingly, during the last 50 years, these two classes of NPS have been the object of scientific research for a set of health conditions. Methods: Searches were conducted in the online database PubMed using boolean equations. Results: Synthetic cannabinoids displayed protective and therapeutic effects for inflammatory, neurodegenerative and oncologic pathologies, activating the immune system and reducing inflammation. Synthetic cathinones act similarly to amphetamine-type stimulants and can be used for depression and chronic fatigue. Conclusions: Despite the scientific advances in this field of research, pharmacological application of NPS is being jeopardized by fatalities associated with their recreational use. This review addresses the scientific achievements of these two classes of NPS and the toxicological data, ending with a reflection on Illicit and NPS control frames. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section New Drugs Exploration and Development)
14 pages, 2339 KiB  
Article
Early Time-Restricted Feeding Amends Circadian Clock Function and Improves Metabolic Health in Male and Female Nile Grass Rats
by Chidambaram Ramanathan, Hayden Johnson, Suman Sharma, Wangkuk Son, Melissa Puppa, Saba Neyson Rohani, Aaryani Tipirneni-Sajja, Richard J. Bloomer and Marie van der Merwe
Medicines 2022, 9(2), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines9020015 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 4201
Abstract
Lengthening the daily eating period contributes to the onset of obesity and metabolic syndrome. Dietary approaches, including energy restriction and time-restricted feeding, are promising methods to combat metabolic disorders. This study explored the effect of early and late time-restricted feeding (TRF) on weight [...] Read more.
Lengthening the daily eating period contributes to the onset of obesity and metabolic syndrome. Dietary approaches, including energy restriction and time-restricted feeding, are promising methods to combat metabolic disorders. This study explored the effect of early and late time-restricted feeding (TRF) on weight and adiposity, food consumption, glycemic control, clock gene expression, and liver metabolite composition in diurnal Nile grass rats (NGRs). Adult male and female Nile grass rats were randomly assigned to one of three groups: (1) access to a 60% high-fat (HF) diet ad-libitum (HF-AD), (2) time-restricted access to the HF diet for the first 6 h of the 12 h light/active phase (HF-AM) or (3) the second 6 h of the 12 h light/active phase (HF-PM). Animals remained on their respective protocols for six weeks. TRF reduced total energy consumption and weight gain, and early TRF (HF-AM) reduced fasting blood glucose, restored Per1 expression, and reduced liver lipid levels. Although sex-dependent differences were observed for fat storage and lipid composition, TRF improved metabolic parameters in both male and female NGRs. In conclusion, this study demonstrated that early TRF protocol benefits weight management, improves lipid and glycemic control, and restores clock gene expression in NGRs. Full article
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16 pages, 1354 KiB  
Review
Neurogenic Dysphagia and Nutrition in Disorder of Consciousness: An Overview with Practical Advices on an “Old” but Still Actual Clinical Problem
by Loredana Raciti, Gianfranco Raciti, Grazia Pulejo, Valeria Conti-Nibali and Rocco Salvatore Calabrò
Medicines 2022, 9(2), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines9020016 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 4869
Abstract
Neurogenic dysphagia is a difficulty in swallowing food caused by disease or impairment of the nervous system, including stroke and traumatic brain injury. The most clinically apparent complication of neurogenic dysphagia is pulmonary aspiration, which may manifest itself acutely as choking or coughing, [...] Read more.
Neurogenic dysphagia is a difficulty in swallowing food caused by disease or impairment of the nervous system, including stroke and traumatic brain injury. The most clinically apparent complication of neurogenic dysphagia is pulmonary aspiration, which may manifest itself acutely as choking or coughing, respiratory distress, wheezing, gasping or gurgling, and tachycardia. However, chronic symptoms, including weight loss, production of excessive oral secretions and aspiration pneumonia, may be also present, especially in patients with a disorder of consciousness (DOC). Usually, patients with dysphagia after the acute phase need to be treated with enteral nutrition using a feeding tube. This avoids patient malnutrition and supports the rehabilitation program. This narrative review aims to investigate dysphagia and its complications and management in patients with DOC. Clinical indications and practical advice on how to assess and treat this complex problem are also provided. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Frailty Syndrome in the Elderly: A Real Challenge for Our Society)
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11 pages, 801 KiB  
Article
Identification of Antimycobacterial Natural Products from a Library of Marine Invertebrate Extracts
by Kojo Sekyi Acquah, Denzil R. Beukes, Ronnett Seldon, Audrey Jordaan, Suthananda N. Sunassee, Digby F. Warner and David W. Gammon
Medicines 2022, 9(2), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines9020009 - 28 Jan 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2567
Abstract
Tuberculosis (TB) remains a public health crisis, requiring the urgent identification of new anti-mycobacterial drugs. We screened several organic and aqueous marine invertebrate extracts for their in vitro inhibitory activity against the causative organism, Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Here, we report the results obtained [...] Read more.
Tuberculosis (TB) remains a public health crisis, requiring the urgent identification of new anti-mycobacterial drugs. We screened several organic and aqueous marine invertebrate extracts for their in vitro inhibitory activity against the causative organism, Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Here, we report the results obtained for 54 marine invertebrate extracts. The chemical components of two of the extracts were dereplicated, using 1H NMR and HR-LCMS with GNPS molecular networking, and these extracts were further subjected to an activity-guided isolation process to purify the bioactive components. Hyrtios reticulatus yielded heteronemin 1 and Jaspis splendens was found to produce the bengamide class of compounds, of which bengamides P 2 and Q 3 were isolated, while a new derivative, bengamide S 5, was putatively identified and its structure predicted, based on the similarity of its MS/MS fragmentation pattern to those of other bengamides. The isolated bioactive metabolites and semi-pure fractions exhibited M. tuberculosis growth inhibitory activity, in the range <0.24 to 62.50 µg/mL. This study establishes the bengamides as potent antitubercular compounds, with the first report of whole-cell antitubercular activity of bengamides P 2 and Q 3. Full article
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11 pages, 854 KiB  
Review
Exercise, Diet and Sleeping as Regenerative Medicine Adjuvants: Obesity and Ageing as Illustrations
by Abdelaziz Ghanemi, Mayumi Yoshioka and Jonny St-Amand
Medicines 2022, 9(1), 7; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines9010007 - 14 Jan 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 5064
Abstract
Regenerative medicine uses the biological and medical knowledge on how the cells and tissue regenerate and evolve in order to develop novel therapies. Health conditions such as ageing, obesity and cancer lead to an impaired regeneration ability. Exercise, diet choices and sleeping pattern [...] Read more.
Regenerative medicine uses the biological and medical knowledge on how the cells and tissue regenerate and evolve in order to develop novel therapies. Health conditions such as ageing, obesity and cancer lead to an impaired regeneration ability. Exercise, diet choices and sleeping pattern have significant impacts on regeneration biology via diverse pathways including reducing the inflammatory and oxidative components. Thus, exercise, diet and sleeping management can be optimized towards therapeutic applications in regenerative medicine. It could allow to prevent degeneration, optimize the biological regeneration and also provide adjuvants for regenerative medicine. Full article
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13 pages, 1241 KiB  
Review
Impact of Drug Pressure versus Limited Access to Drug in Malaria Control: The Dilemma
by Chinedu Ogbonnia Egwu, Nwogo Ajuka Obasi, Chinyere Aloke, Joseph Nwafor, Ioannis Tsamesidis, Jennifer Chukwu and Sunday Elom
Medicines 2022, 9(1), 2; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines9010002 - 04 Jan 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 3182
Abstract
Malaria burden has severe impact on the world. Several arsenals, including the use of antimalarials, are in place to curb the malaria burden. However, the application of these antimalarials has two extremes, limited access to drug and drug pressure, which may have similar [...] Read more.
Malaria burden has severe impact on the world. Several arsenals, including the use of antimalarials, are in place to curb the malaria burden. However, the application of these antimalarials has two extremes, limited access to drug and drug pressure, which may have similar impact on malaria control, leading to treatment failure through divergent mechanisms. Limited access to drugs ensures that patients do not get the right doses of the antimalarials in order to have an effective plasma concentration to kill the malaria parasites, which leads to treatment failure and overall reduction in malaria control via increased transmission rate. On the other hand, drug pressure can lead to the selection of drug resistance phenotypes in a subpopulation of the malaria parasites as they mutate in order to adapt. This also leads to a reduction in malaria control. Addressing these extremes in antimalarial application can be essential in maintaining the relevance of the conventional antimalarials in winning the war against malaria. Full article
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9 pages, 2106 KiB  
Case Report
Effects of Systemic Enzyme Supplements on Symptoms and Quality of Life in Patients with Pulmonary Fibrosis—A Pilot Study
by Neha Shah
Medicines 2021, 8(11), 68; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8110068 - 05 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 9855
Abstract
Current FDA-approved antifibrotic treatments for Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis slow down disease progression but have little impact on symptoms or quality of life in patients. This study was conducted to evaluate the effects of systemic enzymes in relieving symptoms associated with PF and improving [...] Read more.
Current FDA-approved antifibrotic treatments for Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis slow down disease progression but have little impact on symptoms or quality of life in patients. This study was conducted to evaluate the effects of systemic enzymes in relieving symptoms associated with PF and improving quality of life. Methods: an open-label, prospective study on subjects with a confirmed diagnosis of PF was conducted as proof-of-concept. The subjects (n = 13) received the oral systemic enzyme supplements Serracor-NK and Serra Rx for 12 weeks and completed Health-Related Quality of Life (HRQL) questionnaires. The effect of this regimen was examined by comparing the end-of-treatment questionnaire scores with baseline values. Results: significant improvement was seen in 61.5% of subjects, as assessed by the WHO well-being index; an improvement in scores was seen in 84.6% of the subjects, as assessed by the UCSD Shortness of Breath Questionnaire, with 38.4% of the subjects showing minimal clinically important difference; the supplementation was found to be efficacious in 69.2%, 84.6%, 69.2% and 61.5% of the subjects, as assessed by the Saint George’s Respiratory Questionnaire total, symptom, activity, and impact scores, respectively. Conclusions: Serracor-NK and Serra Rx improve symptoms, as well as mental and physical wellbeing and HRQL in patients with PF. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue PROTAC—From Bench to Bed)
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19 pages, 690 KiB  
Review
Herb–Drug Interactions: Worlds Intersect with the Patient at the Center
by Mary Beth Babos, Michelle Heinan, Linda Redmond, Fareeha Moiz, Joao Victor Souza-Peres, Valerie Samuels, Tarun Masimukku, David Hamilton, Myra Khalid and Paul Herscu
Medicines 2021, 8(8), 44; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8080044 - 05 Aug 2021
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 6960
Abstract
This review examines three bodies of literature related to herb–drug interactions: case reports, clinical studies, evaluations found in six drug interaction checking resources. The aim of the study is to examine the congruity of resources and to assess the degree to which case [...] Read more.
This review examines three bodies of literature related to herb–drug interactions: case reports, clinical studies, evaluations found in six drug interaction checking resources. The aim of the study is to examine the congruity of resources and to assess the degree to which case reports signal for further study. A qualitative review of case reports seeks to determine needs and perspectives of case report authors. Methods: Systematic search of Medline identified clinical studies and case reports of interacting herb–drug combinations. Interacting herb–drug pairs were searched in six drug interaction resources. Case reports were analyzed qualitatively for completeness and to identify underlying themes. Results: Ninety-nine case-report documents detailed 107 cases. Sixty-five clinical studies evaluated 93 mechanisms of interaction relevant to herbs reported in case studies, involving 30 different herbal products; 52.7% of these investigations offered evidence supporting reported reactions. Cohen’s kappa found no agreement between any interaction checker and case report corpus. Case reports often lacked full information. Need for further information, attitudes about herbs and herb use, and strategies to reduce risk from interaction were three primary themes in the case report corpus. Conclusions: Reliable herb–drug information is needed, including open and respectful discussion with patients. Full article
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5 pages, 707 KiB  
Commentary
Importance of Apolipoprotein A-I and A-II Composition in HDL and Its Potential for Studying COVID-19 and SARS-CoV-2
by Kyung-Hyun Cho
Medicines 2021, 8(7), 38; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8070038 - 16 Jul 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 3237
Abstract
The composition and properties of apolipoprotein (apo) A-I and apoA-II in high-density lipoproteins (HDL) might be critical to SARS-CoV-2 infection via SR-BI and antiviral activity against COVID-19. HDL containing native apoA-I showed potent antiviral activity, while HDL containing glycated apoA-I or other apolipoproteins [...] Read more.
The composition and properties of apolipoprotein (apo) A-I and apoA-II in high-density lipoproteins (HDL) might be critical to SARS-CoV-2 infection via SR-BI and antiviral activity against COVID-19. HDL containing native apoA-I showed potent antiviral activity, while HDL containing glycated apoA-I or other apolipoproteins did not. However, there has been no report to elucidate the putative role of apoA-II in the antiviral activity of HDL. Full article
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20 pages, 632 KiB  
Review
The Etiology and Pathophysiology Genesis of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia and Prostate Cancer: A New Perspective
by Teow J. Phua
Medicines 2021, 8(6), 30; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8060030 - 11 Jun 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 12164
Abstract
Background: The etiology of benign prostatic hyperplasia and prostate cancer are unknown, with ageing being the greatness risk factor. Methods: This new perspective evaluates the available interdisciplinary evidence regarding prostate ageing in terms of the cell biology of regulation and homeostasis, which could [...] Read more.
Background: The etiology of benign prostatic hyperplasia and prostate cancer are unknown, with ageing being the greatness risk factor. Methods: This new perspective evaluates the available interdisciplinary evidence regarding prostate ageing in terms of the cell biology of regulation and homeostasis, which could explain the timeline of evolutionary cancer biology as degenerative, inflammatory and neoplasm progressions in these multifactorial and heterogeneous prostatic diseases. Results: This prostate ageing degeneration hypothesis encompasses the testosterone-vascular-inflamm-ageing triad, along with the cell biology regulation of amyloidosis and autophagy within an evolutionary tumorigenesis microenvironment. Conclusions: An understanding of these biological processes of prostate ageing can provide potential strategies for early prevention and could contribute to maintaining quality of life for the ageing individual along with substantial medical cost savings. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Cancer Biology and Anticancer Therapeutics)
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7 pages, 534 KiB  
Perspective
The Scientific and Cultural Journey to Ovarian Rejuvenation: Background, Barriers, and Beyond the Biological Clock
by E. Scott Sills
Medicines 2021, 8(6), 29; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8060029 - 08 Jun 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 4306
Abstract
Female age has been known to define reproductive outcome since antiquity; attempts to improve ovarian function may be considered against a sociocultural landscape that foreshadows current practice. Ancient writs heralded the unlikely event of an older woman conceiving as nothing less than miraculous. [...] Read more.
Female age has been known to define reproductive outcome since antiquity; attempts to improve ovarian function may be considered against a sociocultural landscape that foreshadows current practice. Ancient writs heralded the unlikely event of an older woman conceiving as nothing less than miraculous. Always deeply personal and sometimes dynastically pivotal, the goal of achieving pregnancy often engaged elite healers or revered clerics for help. The sorrow of defeat became a potent motif of barrenness or miscarriage lamented in art, music, and literature. Less well known is that rejuvenation practices from the 1900s were not confined to gynecology, as older men also eagerly pursued methods to turn back their biological clock. This interest coalesced within the nascent field of endocrinology, then an emerging specialty. The modern era of molecular science is now offering proof-of-concept evidence to address the once intractable problem of low or absent ovarian reserve. Yet, ovarian rejuvenation by platelet-rich plasma (PRP) originates from a heritage shared with both hormone replacement therapy (HRT) and sex reassignment surgery. These therapeutic ancestors later developed into allied, but now distinct, clinical fields. Here, current iterations of intraovarian PRP are discussed with historical and cultural precursors centering on cell and tissue regenerative effects. Intraovarian PRP thus shows promise for women in menopause as an alternative to conventional HRT, and to those seeking pregnancy—either with advanced reproductive technologies or as unassisted conceptions. Full article
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23 pages, 694 KiB  
Review
Recognition and Management of Antipsychotic-Induced Parkinsonism in Older Adults: A Narrative Review
by Sharadha Wisidagama, Abiram Selladurai, Peter Wu, Marco Isetta and Jordi Serra-Mestres
Medicines 2021, 8(6), 24; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8060024 - 26 May 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 9697
Abstract
Background: Parkinsonism is a common side-effect of antipsychotic drugs especially in older adults, who also present with a higher frequency of neurodegenerative disorders like Idiopathic Parkinson’s disease (IPD). Distinguishing between antipsychotic-induced parkinsonism (AIP) and IPD is challenging due to clinical similarities. Up to [...] Read more.
Background: Parkinsonism is a common side-effect of antipsychotic drugs especially in older adults, who also present with a higher frequency of neurodegenerative disorders like Idiopathic Parkinson’s disease (IPD). Distinguishing between antipsychotic-induced parkinsonism (AIP) and IPD is challenging due to clinical similarities. Up to 20% of older adults may suffer from persisting parkinsonism months after discontinuation of antipsychotics, suggesting underlying neurodegeneration. A review of the literature on AIP in older adults is presented, focusing on epidemiology, clinical aspects, and management. Methods: A literature search was undertaken on EMBASE, MEDLINE and PsycINFO, for articles on parkinsonism induced by antipsychotic drugs or other dopamine 2 receptor antagonists in subjects aged 65 or older. Results: AIP in older adults is the second most common cause of parkinsonism after IPD. Older age, female gender, exposure to high-potency first generation antipsychotics, and antipsychotic dosage are the main risk factors. The clinical presentation of AIP resembles that of IPD, but is more symmetrical, affects upper limbs more, and tends to have associated motor phenomena such as orofacial dyskinesias and akathisia. Presence of olfactory dysfunction in AIP suggests neurodegeneration. Imaging of striatal dopamine transporters is widely used in IPD diagnosis and could help to distinguish it from AIP. There is little evidence base for recommending pharmacological interventions for AIP, the best options being dose-reduction/withdrawal, or switching to a second-generation drug. Conclusions: AIP is a common occurrence in older adults and it is possible to differentiate it from IPD. Further research is needed into its pathophysiology and on its treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Drug-Induced Diseases in the Elderly)
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17 pages, 1712 KiB  
Article
Green Propolis Compounds (Baccharin and p-Coumaric Acid) Show Beneficial Effects in Mice for Melanoma Induced by B16f10
by Gabriel H. Gastaldello, Ana Caroline V. Cazeloto, Juliana C. Ferreira, Débora Munhoz Rodrigues, Jairo Kennup Bastos, Vanessa L. Campo, Karina F. Zoccal and Cristiane Tefé-Silva
Medicines 2021, 8(5), 20; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8050020 - 30 Apr 2021
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 4411
Abstract
Background: Cutaneous melanoma is the most aggressive form of skin cancer, with the worst prognosis, and it affects a younger population than most cancers. The high metastatic index, in more advanced stages, and the high aggressiveness decrease the effectiveness of currently used therapies, [...] Read more.
Background: Cutaneous melanoma is the most aggressive form of skin cancer, with the worst prognosis, and it affects a younger population than most cancers. The high metastatic index, in more advanced stages, and the high aggressiveness decrease the effectiveness of currently used therapies, such as surgical removal, radiotherapy, cryotherapy, and chemotherapy, used alone or in combination. Based on these disadvantages, research focused on alternative medicine offers great potential for therapeutic innovation. Medicinal plants represent a remarkable source of compounds for the treatment of various diseases. Methods: In this study, we investigated the tumoral behavior of melanoma under treatment with the compounds baccharin and p-coumaric acid, extracted from green propolis, in mice inoculated with B16F10 cells for 26 days. Results: A significant modulation in the number of inflammatory cells recruited to the tumor region and blood in the groups treated with the compounds was observed. In addition, a significant reduction in the amount of blood vessels and mitosis in the neoplastic area was noticed. Conclusions: Through our research, we confirmed that baccharin and coumaric acid, isolated substances from Brazilian green propolis, have a promising anticarcinogenic potential to be explored for the development of new antitumor agents, adhering to the trend of drugs with greater tolerance and biological effectiveness. Full article
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22 pages, 2989 KiB  
Review
Trauma-Induced Coagulopathy: Overview of an Emerging Medical Problem from Pathophysiology to Outcomes
by Gabriele Savioli, Iride Francesca Ceresa, Luca Caneva, Sebastiano Gerosa and Giovanni Ricevuti
Medicines 2021, 8(4), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8040016 - 24 Mar 2021
Cited by 20 | Viewed by 11848
Abstract
Coagulopathy induced by major trauma is common, affecting approximately one-third of patients after trauma. It develops independently of iatrogenic, hypothermic, and dilutive causes (such as iatrogenic cause in case of fluid administration), which instead have a pejorative aspect on coagulopathy. Notwithstanding the continuous [...] Read more.
Coagulopathy induced by major trauma is common, affecting approximately one-third of patients after trauma. It develops independently of iatrogenic, hypothermic, and dilutive causes (such as iatrogenic cause in case of fluid administration), which instead have a pejorative aspect on coagulopathy. Notwithstanding the continuous research conducted over the past decade on Trauma-Induced Coagulopathy (TIC), it remains a life-threatening condition with a significant impact on trauma mortality. We reviewed the current evidence regarding TIC diagnosis and pathophysiological mechanisms and summarized the different iterations of optimal TIC management strategies among which product resuscitation, potential drug administrations, and hemostatis-focused approaches. We have identified areas of ongoing investigation and controversy in TIC management. Full article
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22 pages, 1088 KiB  
Review
Sexually Transmitted Neisseria gonorrhoeae Infections—Update on Drug Treatment and Vaccine Development
by Amber Jefferson, Amanda Smith, Pius S. Fasinu and Dorothea K. Thompson
Medicines 2021, 8(2), 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8020011 - 05 Feb 2021
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 6438
Abstract
Background: Sexually transmitted gonorrhea, caused by the Gram-negative diplococcus Neisseria gonorrhoeae, continues to be a serious global health challenge despite efforts to eradicate it. Multidrug resistance among clinical N. gonorrhoeae isolates has limited treatment options, and attempts to develop vaccines have not [...] Read more.
Background: Sexually transmitted gonorrhea, caused by the Gram-negative diplococcus Neisseria gonorrhoeae, continues to be a serious global health challenge despite efforts to eradicate it. Multidrug resistance among clinical N. gonorrhoeae isolates has limited treatment options, and attempts to develop vaccines have not been successful. Methods: A search of published literature was conducted, and information extracted to provide an update on the status of therapeutics and vaccine development for gonorrheal infection. Results: Recommended pharmacological treatment for gonorrhea has changed multiple times due to increasing acquisition of resistance to existing antibiotics by N. gonorrhoeae. Only broad-spectrum cephalosporin-based combination therapies are currently recommended for treatment of uncomplicated urogenital and anorectal gonococcal infections. With the reported emergence of ceftriaxone resistance, successful strategies addressing the global burden of gonorrhea must include vaccination. Century-old efforts at developing an effective vaccine against gonorrhea, leading to only four clinical trials, have not yielded any successful vaccine. Conclusions: While it is important to continue to explore new drugs for the treatment of gonorrhea, the historical trend of resistance acquisition suggests that any long-term strategy should include vaccine development. Advanced technologies in proteomics and in silico approaches to vaccine target identification may provide templates for future success. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section New Drugs Exploration and Development)
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10 pages, 263 KiB  
Article
Stem Cell Ophthalmology Treatment Study (SCOTS): Bone Marrow-Derived Stem Cells in the Treatment of Stargardt Disease
by Jeffrey N. Weiss and Steven Levy
Medicines 2021, 8(2), 10; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8020010 - 03 Feb 2021
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 8503
Abstract
Background: Stargardt Disease is the most common inherited macular degeneration, typically resulting in progressive central vision loss and legal blindness at an early age. We report regarding 34 eyes with Stargardt Disease treated in the Stem Cell Ophthalmology Treatment Study (SCOTS and SCOTS2). [...] Read more.
Background: Stargardt Disease is the most common inherited macular degeneration, typically resulting in progressive central vision loss and legal blindness at an early age. We report regarding 34 eyes with Stargardt Disease treated in the Stem Cell Ophthalmology Treatment Study (SCOTS and SCOTS2). Methods: Autologous bone marrow was processed, separating the stem cell fraction which was provided Arms using retrobulbar, subtenons, intravitreal or subretinal and intravenous. The follow-up period was one year. Results: Of the 34 treated eyes, 21 (61.8%) improved, 8 (23.5%) remained stable, and 5 (14.7%) showed continued progression of their disease. Results were statistically significant with p = 0.0004. The average central vision improvement following treatment was 17.96% (95%CI, 16.39–19.53%) and ranged up to 80.5%. Of 17 patients treated, 13 (76.5%) showed visual acuity improvement in one or both eyes, 3 patients (17.6%) showed no net loss, and 1 worsened as a consequence of disease progression; 94.1% of patients had improved vision or remained stable. There were no adverse events. Conclusions: Patients with Stargardt Disease may potentially benefit from autologous bone marrow-derived stem cells (BMSC) as provided in SCOTS. Improvement or stabilization of vision was found to occur for the vast majority of reported patients and findings were highly statistically significant. Full article
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21 pages, 9866 KiB  
Article
The Infantile Leukoencephalopathy-Associated Mutation of C11ORF73/HIKESHI Proteins Generates De Novo Interactive Activity with Filamin A, Inhibiting Oligodendroglial Cell Morphological Differentiation
by Kohei Hattori, Kenji Tago, Shiori Memezawa, Arisa Ochiai, Sui Sawaguchi, Yukino Kato, Takanari Sato, Kazuma Tomizuka, Hiroaki Ooizumi, Katsuya Ohbuchi, Kazushige Mizoguchi, Yuki Miyamoto and Junji Yamauchi
Medicines 2021, 8(2), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8020009 - 01 Feb 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 3632
Abstract
Background: Genetic hypomyelinating diseases are a heterogeneous group of disorders involving the white matter. One infantile hypomyelinating leukoencephalopathy is associated with the homozygous variant (Cys4-to-Ser (C4S)) of the c11orf73 gene. Methods: We observed that in mouse oligodendroglial FBD-102b cells, the C4S mutant [...] Read more.
Background: Genetic hypomyelinating diseases are a heterogeneous group of disorders involving the white matter. One infantile hypomyelinating leukoencephalopathy is associated with the homozygous variant (Cys4-to-Ser (C4S)) of the c11orf73 gene. Methods: We observed that in mouse oligodendroglial FBD-102b cells, the C4S mutant proteins but not the wild type ones of C11orf73 are microscopically localized in the lysosome. And, they downregulate lysosome-related signaling in an immunoblotting technique. Results: The C4S mutant proteins specifically interact with Filamin A, which is known to anchor transmembrane proteins to the actin cytoskeleton; the C4S mutant proteins and Filamin A are also observed in the lysosome fraction. While parental FBD-102b cells and cells harboring the wild type constructs exhibit morphological differentiation, cells harboring C4S mutant constructs do not. It may be that morphological differentiation is inhibited because expression of these C4S mutant proteins leads to defects in the actin cytoskeletal network involving Filamin A. Conclusions: The findings that leukoencephalopathy-associated C11ORF73 mutant proteins specifically interact with Filamin A, are localized in the lysosome, and inhibit morphological differentiation shed light on the molecular and cellular pathological mechanisms that underlie infantile hypomyelinating leukoencephalopathy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Neurology and Neurologic Diseases)
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14 pages, 760 KiB  
Article
Risk Factors, Clinical Characteristics, and Prognosis of Acute Kidney Injury in Hospitalized COVID-19 Patients: A Retrospective Cohort Study
by Panupong Hansrivijit, Kinjal P. Gadhiya, Mounika Gangireddy and John D. Goldman
Medicines 2021, 8(1), 4; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8010004 - 07 Jan 2021
Cited by 24 | Viewed by 5211
Abstract
Background: Acute kidney injury (AKI) is a serious complication of COVID-19. Methods: Records of hospitalized adult patients with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection from 1 March to 31 May 2020 were retrospectively reviewed. Results: Of 283 patients, AKI occurred in 40.6%. From multivariate analyses, the [...] Read more.
Background: Acute kidney injury (AKI) is a serious complication of COVID-19. Methods: Records of hospitalized adult patients with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection from 1 March to 31 May 2020 were retrospectively reviewed. Results: Of 283 patients, AKI occurred in 40.6%. From multivariate analyses, the risk factors of AKI in COVID-19 can be divided into: (1) demographics/co-morbidities (male, increasing age, diabetes, chronic kidney disease); (2) other organ involvements (transaminitis, elevated troponin I, ST segment/T wave change on electrocardiography); (3) elevated biomarkers (ferritin, lactate dehydrogenase); (4) possible bacterial co-infection (leukocytosis, elevated procalcitonin); (5) need for advanced oxygen delivery (non-invasive positive pressure ventilation, mechanical ventilation); and (6) other critical features (ICU admission, need for vasopressors, acute respiratory distress syndrome). Most AKIs were due to pre-renal (70.4%) and intrinsic (34.8%) causes. Renal replacement therapy was more common in intrinsic AKI. Both pre-renal (HR 3.2; 95% CI 1.7–5.9) and intrinsic AKI (HR 7.7; 95% CI 3.6–16.3) were associated with higher mortality. Male, stage 3 AKI, higher baseline and peak serum creatinine and blood urea nitrogen were prevalent in intrinsic AKI. Urine analysis and the fractional excretion of sodium and urea were not helpful in distinguishing intrinsic AKI from other causes. Conclusions: AKI is very common in COVID-19 and is associated with higher mortality. Characterization of AKI is warranted due to its diverse nature and clinical outcome. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Nephrology and Urology)
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8 pages, 296 KiB  
Review
Erectile Dysfunction Treatment Using Stem Cells: A Review
by Vassilis Protogerou, Dimosthenis Chrysikos, Vasileios Karampelias, Ypatios Spanidis, Sara El Bisari and Theodoros Troupis
Medicines 2021, 8(1), 2; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8010002 - 06 Jan 2021
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 5206
Abstract
Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a disorder that affects the quality of life and the sexual relations of more than half of the male population aged over 40 years. The prediction regarding the incidence of ED is devastating as it is expected that this [...] Read more.
Erectile dysfunction (ED) is a disorder that affects the quality of life and the sexual relations of more than half of the male population aged over 40 years. The prediction regarding the incidence of ED is devastating as it is expected that this disorder will affect more than 300 million men in the next five years. Several studies have suggested the use of stem cells for the treatment of ED and showed that this type of treatment is promising in terms of damaged tissue repair as well as of clinical efficacy; however, there are several gaps in the knowledge and evidence is lacking. In order to highlight a few of them in this review, we performed a research of the literature focusing on currently available clinical studies regarding the clinical efficacy of stem cell administration for the treatment of ED. We reviewed the methods of administration, the cell types used in the performed clinical trials and the safety and efficiency of such procedures. We conclude that there are rapidly expanding and promising results from the reported clinical studies indicating that stem cells could indeed be a potential treatment for patients with ED although more studies are necessary. Full article
17 pages, 1414 KiB  
Article
Predictive Effect of Helicobacter pylori in Gastric Carcinoma Development: Systematic Review and Quantitative Evidence Synthesis
by Laurens Holmes, Jr., Jasmine Rios, Betyna Berice, Jacqueline Benson, Nastocia Bafford, Kadedrah Parson and Daniel Halloran
Medicines 2021, 8(1), 1; https://doi.org/10.3390/medicines8010001 - 05 Jan 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 5356
Abstract
Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is a bacterial pathogen implicated in gastritis, gastric ulceration, and gastric carcinoma. This study aimed to synthesize literature in providing evidence on the causative role of H. pylori in gastric carcinoma development. This study is based on [...] Read more.
Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is a bacterial pathogen implicated in gastritis, gastric ulceration, and gastric carcinoma. This study aimed to synthesize literature in providing evidence on the causative role of H. pylori in gastric carcinoma development. This study is based on assessing public literature using an applied meta-analysis, namely, quantitative evidence synthesis (QES). The analytic procedure uses DerSimonian-Laird, including assessing heterogeneity. The QES also utilizes meta-regression and the environmental effect associated with H. pylori in gastric cancer development. Eighteen studies are included in the QES. There is increased prevalence of H. pylori exposure among the cases. The heterogeneity between the CES and individual effect sizes is also significant. Despite controlling for the confoundings, there is increased exposure to H. pylori among the gastric cancer cases, regardless of the differences in the geographic location. H. pylori in this synthesized literature illustrates the contributory role of this microbe in gastric carcinoma. Additionally, regardless of geographic locale, namely, South Korea or Spain, H. pylori is implicated in gastric cancer development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Cancer Biology and Anticancer Therapeutics)
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